Horror as entertainment? - Adventure Forums
You are viewing an archived version of the site which is no longer maintained.
Go to the current live site or the Adventure Gamers forums
Adventure Gamers

Home Adventure Forums Misc. Chit Chat Horror as entertainment?


 
 
LinkBack Thread Tools
Old 03-01-2009, 09:06 PM   #1
tsa
Playing character
 
tsa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 7,472
Default Horror as entertainment?

In another thread I said:

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsa
I also can't stand people hurting each other as a form of entertainment. I just don't get why people like that. Horror is not for me.
And then Josho said:

Quote:
Originally Posted by Josho
That's an interesting topic that certainly deserves its own thread.

I enjoy horror (games, movies, books) for roughly the same reason that I like roller coasters. They produce a visceral fear reaction that, because I know it's a controlled setting (therefore an illusion), is actually safe. It's an adrenalin rush.

It's funny. I know a lot of people who dismiss horror (especially graphic horror) as entertainment with an "I don't know why anyone would consider that entertainment." Yet many of the same people will happily read a novel, watch a movie, or play a game in which one spouse cheats on the other, for example, or somebody betrays somebody else in a similarly devastating fashion...emotional or psychological torture rather than physical torture.

To me, THAT is much harder to watch or read, and the visceral reaction it produces in me is sometimes so extreme that I feel repulsed rather than entertained.

Bones mend, skin heals. But emotional cruelty scars for a lifetime.

So I'd turn it around and ask, "Why would anyone find fiction with scenes of betrayal and emotional cruelty entertaining?"
So here it is: the "Cruelty as entertainment" thread. I'm curious to your opinion.

Last edited by tsa; 03-01-2009 at 09:52 PM.
tsa is offline  
Old 03-01-2009, 09:41 PM   #2
Junior Member
 
undeaf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Tee Oh
Posts: 842
Default

Intense thunderstorms are fun to watch/experience. But I haven't had one here for quite a while.

Last edited by undeaf; 03-01-2009 at 10:50 PM. Reason: Wrong wording
undeaf is offline  
Old 03-01-2009, 09:51 PM   #3
tsa
Playing character
 
tsa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 7,472
Default

I meant this thread to be about cruelty, not horror in the broadest sense. Sorry Undeaf, my fault for being unclear. Maybe a mod can change the title of the thread into "Cruelty as entertainment?"?
tsa is offline  
Old 03-01-2009, 10:49 PM   #4
Junior Member
 
undeaf's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2006
Location: Tee Oh
Posts: 842
Default

No, I quite intentionally commented on something kind of on a tangent impulsively. Sorry if it might have been too uncontributive.
undeaf is offline  
Old 03-01-2009, 11:36 PM   #5
Senior Member
 
sysryn's Avatar
 
Join Date: Aug 2007
Posts: 102
Default

It is strange how people (well, i can't use the word "enjoy") "focus" their attention on other people's misery. For example when you see a car accident and stuff.

I guess a bit of that goes to cruelty as well. Horrors are ok, and i like to watch them. Same goes for games (Silent hill, alone in the dark...), but i honestly can't say i'm entertained by pure cruelty. That's just mean!
__________________
"Oh God, don't let it be me. I don't deserve to die at the hands of a pixie!"
George Stobbart - Broken Sword
sysryn is offline  
Old 03-02-2009, 10:23 AM   #6
Third Guy from Andromeda
 
Josho's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2005
Posts: 248
Default

I'll add these thoughts: I think one would have to search long and hard to find ANY fiction in which cruelty is not a main character. From the Bible, with its hundreds of murders, tortures, rapes, and mutilations, to the Brothers Grimm, to spy novels, Westerns, romance novels, science fiction..."man's inhumanity to man" is a tried-and-true theme, and it's difficult to construct a villain who's not being cruel to at least someone, if not a whole LOT of someones.

--Josh
Josho is offline  
Old 03-02-2009, 10:41 AM   #7
Part-time Optimist
 
Banderwocky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2008
Posts: 59
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by sysryn View Post
It is strange how people (well, i can't use the word "enjoy") "focus" their attention on other people's misery. For example when you see a car accident and stuff.
I've thought about this before too. I am one of those has to look at an accident, even though I don't like that about myself. I think that when people see horrific things it is like a reminder of our mortality. It's easy to forget that life isn't forever while you are happily living it. But bad accidents remind us "that could be us" and that we are never safe from death and it presses upon us the feeling of the unknown.

I took a horror literature class in college, and we explored the concept of traditional horror( like in Frankenstein or Dracula) and the more modern concepts of "gore" movies. The conclusion my class came up with was that curious humans enjoy this stuff because they naturally crave understanding about death and fear. Sometimes there is a religious side to it too.
__________________
Adventure-Bug. Where I blabber on about my game experiences.

Playing Now: Shadow of Destiny
Recently Finished: Emerald City Confidential,Dead Reefs
Banderwocky is offline  
Old 03-02-2009, 11:02 AM   #8
Stalker of Britain
 
Fantasysci5's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jul 2008
Location: Missouri, US
Posts: 4,535
Default

Well my dear tsa, as much as I love you, plutonically of course, and are a good friend, I must disagree on this. I understand where you're coming from, but I love horror and torture, as long as it isn't real, of course.

No one would like to watch a tv show, or any other form of entertainment, if there were no problems for the characters to face. I just have a dark soul that likes that kind of stuff.
__________________
"And everyone's favourite anglophile, Fantasy!"-Intense
Favorite Adventure Games-Lost Crown/Dark Fall 1&2, Longest Journey games, Myst games, Barrow Hill
Favorite Other Games-King's Bounty, Sims 2, Fable, Disciples 2 Gold
Currently Playing-Trine 2
Games I Want-Kings Bounty: Warriors of the North!!!, Asylum, Last Crown, Braken Tor, Testament of Sherlock Holmes
Fantasysci5 is offline  
Old 03-02-2009, 11:20 AM   #9
Unreliable Narrator
 
Squinky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Le Canada
Posts: 9,873
Send a message via AIM to Squinky Send a message via MSN to Squinky
Default

I can't really watch fictional cruelty of any kind unless it's done in a socially responsible manner -- either to portray characters who are able to overcome it, or to draw awareness to actual atrocities that are currently happening in the world. If it's just done for the shock factor, I'm not a fan.

Plus, I'm squeamish about gore and stuff.
__________________
Squinky is always right, but only for certain values of "always" and "right".
Squinky is offline  
Old 03-02-2009, 11:46 AM   #10
tsa
Playing character
 
tsa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 7,472
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fantasysci5 View Post
Well my dear tsa, as much as I love you, plutonically of course, and are a good friend, I must disagree on this. I understand where you're coming from, but I love horror and torture, as long as it isn't real, of course.
So we have a plutonic relationship? Cool!

Quote:
Originally Posted by Fantasysci5 View Post
No one would like to watch a tv show, or any other form of entertainment, if there were no problems for the characters to face. I just have a dark soul that likes that kind of stuff.
There are a lot of interesting problems characters can face without torturing. I don't mind violence and am not anti-war or anything, but where's the fun in seeing someone being cut to pieces for no reason?

Quote:
Originally Posted by Squinky View Post
I can't really watch fictional cruelty of any kind unless it's done in a socially responsible manner -- either to portray characters who are able to overcome it, or to draw awareness to actual atrocities that are currently happening in the world. If it's just done for the shock factor, I'm not a fan.

Plus, I'm squeamish about gore and stuff.
I think I feel about the same way as you Squinky.
tsa is offline  
Old 03-02-2009, 12:00 PM   #11
Unreliable Narrator
 
Squinky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Le Canada
Posts: 9,873
Send a message via AIM to Squinky Send a message via MSN to Squinky
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsa View Post
I think I feel about the same way as you Squinky.
Except I do mind violence and I am strongly anti-war.

Not that I don't think these things should be dealt with in fiction. On the contrary, it's necessary that they are, if only because these are real things that we have to deal with in our world today. Again, there needs to be a socially responsible reason for it.
__________________
Squinky is always right, but only for certain values of "always" and "right".
Squinky is offline  
Old 03-02-2009, 12:21 PM   #12
tsa
Playing character
 
tsa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 7,472
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Squinky View Post
Except I do mind violence and I am strongly anti-war.
Let me make it clear that violence and war should only be used when all other options are exhausted. Unfortunately some people will only listen to violence, so sometimes it's necessary.
tsa is offline  
Old 03-02-2009, 12:45 PM   #13
Lazy Bee
 
Jelena's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2006
Location: Sweden
Posts: 7,518
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsa View Post
I meant this thread to be about cruelty, not horror in the broadest sense.
I'm not at all into horror movies, but strangely I like horror adventure games very much. I don't know why.
Cruelty and gore in movies is not an option at all for me. I literally can't make myself watch it. Even a fist fight makes me turn my head away.
Like Squinks said violence should be dealt with in fiction. But there are many ways to deal with the matter without shoving it in our faces. I'm more fond of subtle ways of describing violent courses of event.
__________________
Temporary guest in your life
Jelena is offline  
Old 03-02-2009, 12:50 PM   #14
tsa
Playing character
 
tsa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 7,472
Default

I feel the same Jelena, although I can stand James Bond movies and stuff like that. But it shouldn't go much further. I also can't stand watching magicians doing all sorts of cruel things to people. It makes me sick and gives me nightmares.

Last edited by tsa; 03-02-2009 at 12:55 PM.
tsa is offline  
Old 03-03-2009, 01:02 PM   #15
Headbanger
 
Henke's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: The North
Posts: 2,233
Default

I love horror, gore and both physical and mental misery in movies, books, games or any fictional medium.

In real life I absolutely despise violence in any form and I'm 100 % anti-war in all cases.

I guess that if you analyse this you get the possibility that I get all my adrenaline "kicks" when I consume culture since I have no desire what so ever to deal with things like this in real life.

In other words, the mainstream Disney- and Popmusic-fans are the ones that are serial killers in their spare time.
__________________
NP: Botanicula, Catherine, Dear Esther, Okami
Henke is offline  
Old 03-03-2009, 01:38 PM   #16
tsa
Playing character
 
tsa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 7,472
Default

Today I thought: you can also turn the question around: why can't some people stand cruelty while they know it's fake?
tsa is offline  
Old 03-03-2009, 02:00 PM   #17
Unreliable Narrator
 
Squinky's Avatar
 
Join Date: Apr 2004
Location: Le Canada
Posts: 9,873
Send a message via AIM to Squinky Send a message via MSN to Squinky
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by tsa View Post
Today I thought: you can also turn the question around: why can't some people stand cruelty while they know it's fake?
Well, in my case, it's because even though I know something I'm seeing is fake, it's quite likely that something very much like what I'm seeing actually happens in the real world.
__________________
Squinky is always right, but only for certain values of "always" and "right".
Squinky is offline  
Old 03-03-2009, 02:21 PM   #18
The Quiet One
 
DustyShinigami's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2006
Location: Staffordshire, UK
Posts: 1,986
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Henke View Post
I love horror, gore and both physical and mental misery in movies, books, games or any fictional medium.

In real life I absolutely despise violence in any form and I'm 100 % anti-war in all cases.

I guess that if you analyse this you get the possibility that I get all my adrenaline "kicks" when I consume culture since I have no desire what so ever to deal with things like this in real life.
I'm the same there. I love horror, gore and violence in movies, games, books etc, but i'm not a violent person by any means. And i don't like violence in real life or war either.

My mum also can't understand why people, like me, love horror and gore in movies. What can i say? I'm depraved.

Peter Jackson was the same when he made his earlier films (Bad Taste, Meet the Feebles and Braindead). They're completely over-the-top violent and gorey, but he said in a documentary for Bad Taste, that he isn't a violent guy and would never do any of the stuff that happens in the movie. But he had loads of fun making those movies and experimented with loads of sick special effects.

For me, i can't really explain it. I'm a dark individual anyway so they appeal. And these sorts of things are ideal for expressing/channeling bad/negative energy. And yeah, a lot of people love the adrenaline rush and being scared. I'd also find it a bit boring if nothing really bad happened to any characters in any fictional entertainment.
__________________
Now Playing: Broken Sword: Shadow of the Templars - The Director's Cut (DS and iPhone), DOOM 3: Resurrection of Evil, Hotel Dusk: Room 215, Phoenix Wright: Ace Attorney Justice for All, Silent Hill - HD Collection
Recently Completed: Max Payne, Max Payne 2: The Fall of Max Payne
Next: Bayonetta, Devil May Cry - HD Collection, Max Payne 3, Metal Gear Solid - HD Collection, Silent Hill: Downpour
DustyShinigami is offline  
Old 03-03-2009, 05:51 PM   #19
Headbanger
 
Henke's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2003
Location: The North
Posts: 2,233
Default

I think it's a rather natural thing that some people like lighthearted entertainment (which is understandable) while others prefer harsh things. Why certain people like certain things surely is a difficult topic. Partly congenital and partly based on ones childhood, perhaps?
__________________
NP: Botanicula, Catherine, Dear Esther, Okami
Henke is offline  
Old 03-06-2009, 01:37 AM   #20
tsa
Playing character
 
tsa's Avatar
 
Join Date: Oct 2005
Location: Netherlands
Posts: 7,472
Default

Quote:
Originally Posted by Squinky View Post
Well, in my case, it's because even though I know something I'm seeing is fake, it's quite likely that something very much like what I'm seeing actually happens in the real world.
I guess it's something like that for me too. The fact that people come up with inventive ways to torture people for movies means that the same things will most probably be done by real torturers to real people.
tsa is offline  
 



Thread Tools

 


Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.11
Copyright ©2000 - 2020, vBulletin Solutions Inc.